Thursday, 1 March 2012

Analysis of the February Halo Sparkast

The new Halo Sparkast is out on Waypoint and I know many of you like your databursts broken down into nice easy to consume morsels, so here's a breakdown of all the key points from today's podcast. My comments are in italics

You can listen to the podcast online here. I'm sure it'll be up on iTunes and Zune shortly.

- It's been 6 months since last real update at Halofest, feels like 2 years for all that's gone on.

- Multiplayer focused milestone imminent - Possibly a clue to an upcoming public beta?

Take the jump for more:

- Take home playtests throughout the week, It's a magical turning point to now play for fun.

- Graphical polish is genuinely impressive - talk of a specifically pretty/recognisable map - Is there a  more recognisable map that Blood Gulch?

- 2 years ago there were 40-50 people on the team now 200-250 people

- Discussion of pre-production and production. Starting with prototypes and proof of concepts for game experience. Then transition to really producing all the assets. The final year is mostly polishing all of those ideas.

- Discussion of a "specific character feature" that design team are excited about. - No more info than this given probably some Forerunner enhancement to the suit?

 - Anxiety turning to relief as some of the more risky ideas come together and are really good.

- As we already know the game is now playable all the way through - still a long way to go to get ready for the public though.

- Frank says he was one of the most conservative people in the studio, but is really happy and surprised with how some of the new changes have turned out. Many of his predictions are out of the window as the game reaches places he never expected.

- Minor discussion on Chief's cod piece

- An artist had the Halo 3 cheif and Halo 4 side by side in 3DSMax and they looked very similar, slight differences due to new artist and new graphical tech. If people were flipping out about the Chief they'll be flipping about a lot of other elements of the industrial design of Halo 4. Frank says "in a good way" - Knowing the community as I do, I wouldn't be so sure about that, Frankie. 

- "Changes are due to the functions of his suit" - Very interesting! We know about the jet/boostpack, but I get the feeling we'll be seeing a bigger change imminently. 

- First person model will reflect a lot of these changes, looking at joints and feet --[REDACTED]-- broken mixing desk, something something lost podcast.

- Discussion about new music, apparently it's amazing, none of it is played for us. Feels very Halo, but also different and fresh. Taken a huge journey over the last 6 months, very confident and inspiring music. It's different, but also familiar to what we're used to. I guess in a similar vein to how Reach sounded very much like Halo, but also very different to that which had come before.

- It wouldn't make sense to just try and do the same thing that Marty's been doing a wonderful job on for the last 10 years. Honours Marty's themes, but doesn't mimic them.

- Big musical reveal will come at some point in the future before launch.

- Frank smells so we have to stop now.

- There will be some interesting stuff to share in March.  

       - Cowboy Out. 

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